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American Alliance of Museums Advocacy Alerts
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UPDATE: STOP Act Passed [January 2023]
The Safeguard Tribal Objects of Patrimony Act, which outlaws the exportation of Native American human remains and cultural items obtained illegally, was passed by Congress and signed by President Biden in late December. The law also creates a certification system for items that can be exported, increases the maximum prison sentence for stealing or trafficking items to ten years from five years, and creates avenues to have stolen items returned to their rightful owners.
UPDATE: The 2023 Omnibus Funding includes museum and heritage legislation [January 2023]
The bill passed by Congress and signed by President Biden at the end of December includes increased funding for the Institute of Museum and Library Services ($295 million), the National Endowment for the Humanities ($207 million), the National Endowment for the Arts ($207 million), and the Historic Preservation Fund ($204 million); the African American Burial Grounds Preservation Act, which authorizes the National Park Service to establish a $3M grant program to identify and protect African American Burial Grounds; and the National Heritage Area Act of 2021 which creates a uniform system for reauthorizing National Heritage Areas (NHAs), allocating standard funding, and providing universal standards to how to manage current and future NHAs.
ACTION: Ask Your US Senators to Permanently Protect the Grand Canyon from Uranium Mining
S. 387, the Grand Canyon Protection Act, already passed by the House of Represenatives, would make the temporary ban on new mining claims on about 1 million acres of public lands surrounding Grand Canyon National Park permanent, protecting the Grand Canyon forever. A Senate bill would make the temporary ban on new mining claims on about 1 million acres of public lands surrounding Grand Canyon National Park permanent, protecting the Grand Canyon forever. Use the Grand Canyon Conservancy’s automated letter to contact Senators Kelly and Sinema. [December 2022]
ACTION: Ask Your US Representative and Senators to Protect the Chaco Heritage Area
The Chaco Cultural Heritage Area Protection Act (S.5124/H.R. 9344) would prevent new energy development in the immediate area surrounding Chaco Culture National Historical Park in New Mexico, protecting world-class cultural resources important to tribes and to our shared American heritage. Use the National Trust for Historic Preservation's automated letter to contact your US legislators and ask them to support this Act. [December 2022]
ACTION: Support the Nomination of the U.S. Archivist
Contact your U.S. Senators today in support of Dr. Colleen Joy Shogan to be the 11th Archivist of the United States: The National Coalition for History is pressing the Senate to confirm Dr. Shogan’s nomination before the end of the current Congress, or it could be delayed next year. It's vital that we have a permanent Archivist of the United States in place at this critical time in our nation’s history. For additional background, see the letter that the National Coalition for History sent to the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee in support of Dr. Shogan’s confirmation at https://historycoalition.org/wp-content/uploads/2022/09/Natl-Coalition-for-History-Dr-Shogan-AOTUS-endorsement.pdf Use the automated website to send an email to your two U.S. Senators. [November 2022]
ACTION: Support the Great Bend of the Gila Conservation Act
U.S. Representative Raúl Grijalva recently introduced legislation to protect the Great Bend of the Gila, a river valley and surrounding desert region between Phoenix and Yuma, Arizona. Tribes, local communities, businesses, recreationalists, conservationists, and heritage preservationists have been working for decades to provide greater permanent protections for this region’s history, heritage, and natural values . Sign the letter of support created by Respect the Great Bend of the Gila. [September 2022]
ACTION: Support Funding for the IMLS Office of Museum Services
The House Appropriations Committee has approved a $6.8 million increase to $54.3 million for the IMLS Office of Museum Services (OMS) for FY23, allowing for an increase in every Museum Services program. In addition, IMLS would get an additional $1.1 million for Research, Analysis, and Data Collection expected to benefit museums.
Ask your US Senators and Representative to support this funding by using the American Alliance of Museums automated letter. [September 2022]
ACTION: Support History and Civics Educational Programs
The bipartisan Civics Supports Democracy Act (HR 1814/S 4384) would provide $5 billion to fund K-12 history and civics education and programs over the next five years. If passed into law and fully funded, at least $200 million annually would go to "qualified nonprofit organizations," such as museums, through competitive grants to develop or expand access to civics curricula, instructional models, and other educational programs to enhance student knowledge and achievement in American civics and history in elementary schools and secondary schools. Priority would be given to grant proposals focused on traditionally underserved populations.
Ask your US Senators and Representative to co-sponsor this legislation by using the American Alliance of Museums automated letter. [August 2022]
ACTION: Permanent Ban on Uranium Mining Near the Grand Canyon
The U.S. House of Representatives is expected to consider adding the Grand Canyon Protection Act as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). If successful, a permanent ban on new uranium mines on public lands around the Grand Canyon would pass the House for a third time this Congress and have another path toward final passage and signature by the president. [July 2022]
Use the automated form letter from the Grand Canyon Trust to ask your US Representative to support Amendment 254 to the National Defense Authorization Act.
ACTION: Become a National Voter Registration Day Partner
National Voter Registration Day (September 20) is a great opportunity for nonprofits to ensure that their staff, volunteers, and community members are registered to vote. Sign up to join the nationwide effort to register hundreds of thousands of voters on September 20. As an official partner, your nonprofit will receive a free voter registration kit and access to other opportunities to support your nonpartisan voter registration work. [July 2022]
ACTION: Ask Senators for Funding for NEA and NEH
The U.S. House of Representatives passed the FY ‘23 Interior Appropriations bill with increased funding of $207 million each for the NEA, NEH, and full funding for the Smithsonian on Wednesday, July 20, 2022, as part of a 6-bill minibus funding package. The Senate Appropriations Committee will begin consideration of this same funding bill beginning as early as next week and continue into the fall. [July 2022]
Ask your U.S. Senators to match the House-approved FY ‘23 funding levels for the NEA and NEH at $207 million each by using the automated letter from Americans for the Arts.
ACTION: Request Increased Funding for NARA
Over the past decade, funding for the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) has stagnated while its responsibilities have increased. This lack of funds has undermined NARA’s ability to process and manage records. Urge Congress to begin rebuilding this crucial agency in FY 2023 by providing at least $426.5 million in its operating budget and $9.5 million for the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC), the grant-giving arm of the agency. Use the National Humanities Alliance online tool to contact your members of Congress and ask for funding to rebuild NARA. [June 2022]
How to contact your Arizona Legislators
Arizona Citizens for the Arts Advocacy Network
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ADVOCACY ACTION: Ask State Senators to fund the Arizona State Parks Heritage Fund [January 2023]
Senate Bill 1224 (state parks; heritage fund; lottery) to fund the Arizona State Parks Heritage Fund has been assigned to the Senate Natural Resources, Energy, and Water Committee (members listed below), and is on the agenda to be heard on Thursday, February 2, 2023.
David Gowan (District 19) firstname.lastname@example.org
Frank Carroll (District 28) email@example.com
Sine Kerr, Chair (District 25) firstname.lastname@example.org
Juan Mendez (District 8) email@example.com
Brian Fernandez (District 23) firstname.lastname@example.org
Priya Sundareshan (District 18) email@example.com
T.J. Shope,Vice Chair (District 16) firstname.lastname@example.org
If you live in one of these Senator’s districts, please send them an email with the following message:
Please support Senate Bill 1224 (state parks; heritage fund; lottery) to fund the Arizona State Parks Heritage Fund. The Heritage Fund is a crucial funding mechanism to invest in the trails, parks, cultural sites, and open spaces that many of our communities, especially in rural and tribal areas, depend upon for generating tourism-related economic activities that in turn create jobs and support local business.
UPDATE: Arizona FY 24 Budget Include Funding for Arts Commission [January 2023]
The Governor’s proposed budget for the State of Arizona for FY 2024 includes an historic $20 million one-time allocation to the Arizona Commission on the Arts. The Governor’s budget proposal is the first step in the budget-development process. Over the coming weeks, Arizona legislators will create their own proposals for the State’s FY2024 budget. Throughout this legislative process, it is important that we let elected representatives know that the arts are important. For now please send a thank-you message to Governor Hobbs at https://azgovernor.gov/contact/form/contact-governor-hobbs